Dibond and Aluminium: A Simple question

I have a very basic question for anyone who has used Dibond or Aluminium. I’m busy trying to order some.

Thing is, it seems that people tend to buy it with a layer of white Something or other on it.

Alternatively, you can buy it where you get a pure brushed aluminium surface.

Now, ideally I think the latter option is the one I want to go for. Ideally I want to paint gesso layers onto the Aluminium substrate.

But I’ve heard that might be difficult. Plus all the artists I’ve seen online seem to use the Dibond with a white layer (of something or other) already put onto it.

So, does anyone with any experience of Dibond know anything about all this? Thanks

hi thomas, i can’t answer your question because i have never tried painting on metal directly, although it is something i would like to try. so i did a little digging and found this:


he mentions other artists painting on the white layer, but also a few alternatives for working from the bare metal. maybe it’s helpful to you.

something i’d be keen to try someday is painting on copper. here candice bohannon is describing the priming process:


her work is stunning!
so if aluminium doesn’t work out for you, maybe have a crack at copper instead :slight_smile:

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Thanks very much for the info Sigrid.

On top of what you’ve linked me to, I have seen a youtube video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VS-nYO0Gphs, where the artist simply paints onto aluminium directly.

As with what was said in your first link, this gives me belief that it shouldn’t be difficult to prime Aluminium. I had wondered if there might be a problem getting the gesso to stick, but this doesn’t appear to be a problem.

Currently I’ve ordered some primed Aluminium and some normal stuff. It was my intention in both cases to put gesso onto both.

Anyway, there are many things to consider. When I’ve done some experimenting I’ll report back my results :slightly_smiling_face: